Cranach - Heraclitus
Heraclitus
Franz Timmermann
Herzog August Bibliothek Wolfenbüttel
06.12.2021 - 11:38
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Painting:
CDA ID / Inventory NumberDE_HABW_B63
Persistent Linkhttps://lucascranach.org/DE_HABW_B63
FR (1978) No.FR-none
Title:
Heraclitus[cda 2019]
Attribution:
Franz Timmermann [Cat. Wolfenbüttel 2012, 418-425, No. 111]
Dating:
1538[Pendant dated]
Owner / Repository / Location:
OwnerHerzog August Bibliothek Wolfenbüttel
RepositoryHerzog August Bibliothek Wolfenbüttel
LocationWolfenbüttel
Dimensions:
Dimensions of support: 25.9 x 20 cm
Dimensions including frame: 35.9 x 29.9 cm
[Cat. Wolfenbüttel 2012, 418-425, No. 111]
Support:
Painting on deciduous wood
[Cat. Wolfenbüttel 2012, 418-425, No. 111]
Signature / Date:
Pendant signed and dated
Inscriptions, Marks, Labels, Seals:
Original Inscriptions:
- above the sitter's head: 'HERACLITVS'
- at the bottom edge: 'QVOD VITA EST HO[M]NIVM, DVBIIS TAM PLENA PERICLIS / CVLTA FACIT LACHRYMIS, ORA MADERE PIIS.'
[Cat. Wolfenbüttel 2012, 418-425, No. 111]
Inscriptions, Marks, Labels, Seals:
on the reverse:
- adhesive label with a stamp: 'Herzog August Bibliothek Wolfenbüttel' and inventory no.: 'B63'
on the frame:
- adhesive label from the restorer Müller-Jung with information about the conservation treatment
[Cat. Wolfenbüttel 2012, 418-425, No. 111]
Description:
The philosopher is depicted as a half-length figure, turned slightly to the right against a green background. He is wearing a black academic gown. He supports his head on his left arm and is holding a white handkerchief. His wrinkled, beardless face is wet with tears and the corners of his mouth are drooped.
[see: Cat. Wolfenbüttel 2012, 418-425, No. 111]
Provenance:
- unknown
- first recorded about 1870 in an inventory by Thies
[Cat. Wolfenbüttel 2012, 418-425, No. 111]
Sources / Publications:
Reference on PageCatalogue NumberFigure/Plate
Cat. Wolfenbüttel 2012418-425No. 111Figs. 111, 111.1
Interpretation / History / Discussion:
The two panels depicting Democritus and Heraclitus as ‚laughing and crying‘ philosophers are a remarkable testimony to the status of humanist subjects, as well as the reception of antiquity in Germany in the first half of the 16th century. As far as we know these portraits are the earliest and for some decades the only representations of this subject in Germany to have survived. Although they were published in 1904 in ‘Bau- und Kunstdenkmälern der Stadt Wolfenbüttel’ the paintings from Wolfenbüttel are not mentioned in any other previous scholarly literature.
[Cat. Wolfenbüttel 2012, 418-425, No. 110-111]
Material / Technique:
  • Date:
  • Technical Examination
  • 8.01 Support
  • - a protective coating was applied to the reverse of the panel
    - the edges of the panel is chamfered
  • 8.05 Framing
  • - blackish brown, fluted profile with wave moulding decorating both the interior and exterior.
    [Cat. Wolfenbüttel 2012, 418-425, No. 111]
      Condition Reports:
      • Date:
      • - fine craquelé, mainly with vertical cracks in the direction of the grain
        - numerous fills and retouches, particularly along the crack formation and at the edges
        [Cat. Wolfenbüttel 2012, 418-425, No. 111]
        History of Restoration:
        • Date: 26.03.2019 - 22.03.1969
        • '1969 conservation treatment by Heinz Müller-Jung'

          [Cat. Wolfenbüttel 2012, 418-425, No. 111]
        • conservation treatment by: Heinz Müller-Jung